Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free
x Turn on thread page Beta

Is it wise to do a masters if it won't help employment prospects? watch

Announcements
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    I graduated in 2014 with a 2:1 in Politics. I now hate my job and I miss learning. I have the itch to go back to university and do a masters. Thing is, whenever I've mentioned this to people I get the whole "how is that going to enhance your career prospects?", and truth is, it probably won't. I just want to.

    Idk though...I'm not eligible for a loan in the UK so I was gonna do it in Sweden so there's a degree of investment involved in terms of living expenses. I don't know if it's worth the investment if it's not going to help me in terms of career, but at the same time I really want to. People just make me feel it's stupid.

    Can anyone comment who has done a masters purely because they wanted to? Has it helped your career at all?

    It might be helpful if I say what masters I was considering. I'm not entirely sure, that's the thing. I'm undecided between a few, like political science, education and political economy. So nothing majorly vocational that could help me, I don't think.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    Unless the kind of job you're after specifically requires a Masters then there is no point.

    As far as I know, the vast majority of jobs related to a politics degree only require a Bachelors, so my advice is just to stay in your job and hope for a promotion.
    • Community Assistant
    • CV Helper
    Offline

    19
    ReputationRep:
    Community Assistant
    CV Helper
    (Original post by Airfairy)
    I graduated in 2014 with a 2:1 in Politics. I now hate my job and I miss learning. I have the itch to go back to university and do a masters. Thing is, whenever I've mentioned this to people I get the whole "how is that going to enhance your career prospects?", and truth is, it probably won't. I just want to.

    Idk though...I'm not eligible for a loan in the UK so I was gonna do it in Sweden so there's a degree of investment involved in terms of living expenses. I don't know if it's worth the investment if it's not going to help me in terms of career, but at the same time I really want to. People just make me feel it's stupid.

    Can anyone comment who has done a masters purely because they wanted to? Has it helped your career at all?

    It might be helpful if I say what masters I was considering. I'm not entirely sure, that's the thing. I'm undecided between a few, like political science, education and political economy. So nothing majorly vocational that could help me, I don't think.
    Those are all 3 relatively career enhancing degrees, provided you have an interest in working in those areas. What matters is what career path are you on, and would a one year break now harm that? Or, what career path do you want to be on, and would a transitional qualification be a better use of your time, money and effort?

    (Original post by #ChaosKass)
    Unless the kind of job you're after specifically requires a Masters then there is no point.

    As far as I know, the vast majority of jobs related to a politics degree only require a Bachelors, so my advice is just to stay in your job and hope for a promotion.
    No so, a Masters is almost a pre-requisite for many politics/international relations type jobs. It's one of the main sectors where a Masters is a starting qualification. A lot of people working in the sector are a) form the EU where a Masters is more common, b)second careerists where they get a Masters as a career chance qualification and c) the competition is intense and so the higher qualification is desirable.
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    If you are certain that your Masters isn't going to give you any professional advantage, try this. Tot up roughly how much your Masters is going to cost you in fees + living costs. In the UK that's going to be maybe £20,000, probably less in Sweden. Think about what else you could spend that money on. You could use it to take a year off work. Travel the world? Do some sort of course or learning other than a Masters? Could you use it as a mortgage deposit? Buy the car of your dreams? Go nuts. Brainstorm the possibilities.

    If you look at all the options and your favourite is still the Masters, then go for it.*

    You don't have to do a Masters to get you ahead in a career. You can just do one for the love of the subject. But it is a heck of a lot of money to spend on following a passion, so do be very sure that it's right for you.

    I can't really advise from experience, as my Masters was both my passion and a potential step on both professional and academic paths. I didn't have to do it, but whilst I could afford it, it was just a no-brainer for me.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    Thanks for the advice, it has given me some interesting things to think about. I don't work in a job related to my degree at the moment and to be honest I'm not really sure what I want to do once I decide to leave my current job (teaching). I just know I don't want to stay in my current career, but I've considered other roles in education, or perhaps the Civil Service.

    I made a list of masters that I am interested in and none feel like they would help my career. :dontknow: Gah
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Airfairy)
    I graduated in 2014 with a 2:1 in Politics. I now hate my job and I miss learning. I have the itch to go back to university and do a masters. Thing is, whenever I've mentioned this to people I get the whole "how is that going to enhance your career prospects?", and truth is, it probably won't. I just want to.

    Idk though...I'm not eligible for a loan in the UK so I was gonna do it in Sweden so there's a degree of investment involved in terms of living expenses. I don't know if it's worth the investment if it's not going to help me in terms of career, but at the same time I really want to. People just make me feel it's stupid.

    Can anyone comment who has done a masters purely because they wanted to? Has it helped your career at all?

    It might be helpful if I say what masters I was considering. I'm not entirely sure, that's the thing. I'm undecided between a few, like political science, education and political economy. So nothing majorly vocational that could help me, I don't think.
    If you're planning on doing it Sweden, could you also try and get a job there maybe with an English speaking company whilst you are doing your masters? It will look so amazing on your CV to have the working abroad aspect plus the masters
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    Why does it have to help your career?
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Pinkberry_y)
    If you're planning on doing it Sweden, could you also try and get a job there maybe with an English speaking company whilst you are doing your masters? It will look so amazing on your CV to have the working abroad aspect plus the masters
    I would love to work there (that's the goal). I've googled the hell out of it though and it seems pretty unlikely I'd get any work there if I don't speak Swedish and don't have an in demand skill.
    (Original post by Euphiletos)
    Why does it have to help your career?
    Ehh, pressure from family mainly. And the nagging voice in the back of my head about the cost.
    • Community Assistant
    • CV Helper
    Offline

    19
    ReputationRep:
    Community Assistant
    CV Helper
    (Original post by Airfairy)
    I would love to work there (that's the goal). I've googled the hell out of it though and it seems pretty unlikely I'd get any work there if I don't speak Swedish and don't have an in demand skill.


    Ehh, pressure from family mainly. And the nagging voice in the back of my head about the cost.
    I think the real question is what are you going to do that fills and fulfills the next 60 years of your life? It seems the Master's plan might just be a pleasant way to stall decisions for another year, but as you have noted, won't get you any closer to a decision. What are the chances that, after a non-vocational Masters, you find yourself in another unhappy, non-career role, and still with no career plan?

    You should focus on doing an self-assessment of your skills, experience and interests and put together a 'how am I going to earn enough money to live and be happy' plan. That might include doing a Masters at some point, but I think your question really highlights the underlying issue that you know you are stalling without any underlying plan or strategy.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by threeportdrift)
    I think the real question is what are you going to do that fills and fulfills the next 60 years of your life? It seems the Master's plan might just be a pleasant way to stall decisions for another year, but as you have noted, won't get you any closer to a decision. What are the chances that, after a non-vocational Masters, you find yourself in another unhappy, non-career role, and still with no career plan?

    You should focus on doing an self-assessment of your skills, experience and interests and put together a 'how am I going to earn enough money to live and be happy' plan. That might include doing a Masters at some point, but I think your question really highlights the underlying issue that you know you are stalling without any underlying plan or strategy.
    You are totally correct, and I've been thinking about what I want to do for something like ten years now, and I'm not closer to getting an answer. I can only conclude I'm going to be one of those people who drift between careers never really settling in one. And yeah, it bothers me, but I'm not entirely sure what to do about it :dontknow: .

    For the record I might be unhappy but I'm not in a non-career role. I'd say being an A-Level teacher is a career.
    Offline

    6
    ReputationRep:
    While it might not progress your career, it won't do it any harm, and might propel you in new and interesting directions!


    Posted from TSR Mobile
    Offline

    10
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Airfairy)
    I graduated in 2014 with a 2:1 in Politics. I now hate my job and I miss learning. I have the itch to go back to university and do a masters. Thing is, whenever I've mentioned this to people I get the whole "how is that going to enhance your career prospects?", and truth is, it probably won't. I just want to.

    Idk though...I'm not eligible for a loan in the UK so I was gonna do it in Sweden so there's a degree of investment involved in terms of living expenses. I don't know if it's worth the investment if it's not going to help me in terms of career, but at the same time I really want to. People just make me feel it's stupid.

    Can anyone comment who has done a masters purely because they wanted to? Has it helped your career at all?

    It might be helpful if I say what masters I was considering. I'm not entirely sure, that's the thing. I'm undecided between a few, like political science, education and political economy. So nothing majorly vocational that could help me, I don't think.
    How do you know it won't hep employment prospects? Unless you plan to stay in the same job you are in now until you retire...
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by BexiG)
    How do you know it won't hep employment prospects? Unless you plan to stay in the same job you are in now until you retire...
    I DEFINITELY do not plan to stay in this job until I retire.

    I don't know - information on how a masters will help your employment prospects is quite scarce. I always end up thinking that unless it's an MSc in a useful skill, it isn't going to add much. For example, I don't know what a MA in Politics would add at all. I could be wrong though. I don't know.
    Offline

    10
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Airfairy)
    I DEFINITELY do not plan to stay in this job until I retire.

    I don't know - information on how a masters will help your employment prospects is quite scarce. I always end up thinking that unless it's an MSc in a useful skill, it isn't going to add much. For example, I don't know what a MA in Politics would add at all. I could be wrong though. I don't know.
    I'm about to start a masters next month. The reason I have choosen to do it is 1. It separates me from the crowd 2. I'm specialising 3. It gets me closer to my goal via the specialism, networking etc 4. I could argue this is the most important one - It's for me, no one else. 5. I continue to learn in my choosen field

    If you can relate to these points, then perhaps a masters is for you
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by BexiG)
    I'm about to start a masters next month. The reason I have choosen to do it is 1. It separates me from the crowd 2. I'm specialising 3. It gets me closer to my goal via the specialism, networking etc 4. I could argue this is the most important one - It's for me, no one else. 5. I continue to learn in my choosen field

    If you can relate to these points, then perhaps a masters is for you
    Thanks for sharing your reasons. I relate to all apart from number three because I don't have a goal :awesome: . I guess that's the one thing holding me back.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    I'm doing a similar thing to the OP. I have applied to do a MSc in Cyber Security. I've worked in the field for 6 years and got the professional qualifications that will make my CV stand out.

    But from a personal point of view, I didn't get a very good BSc degree, I scraped a 2:2 and it is something that has irked me for while, I guess I feel I need to prove to myself that my BSc is not a true reflection of my ability (I didn't have the right mentality whilst an undergrad). I'm doing a MSc (If I get accepted) on a part-time distance learning basis. It may help my career prospects somewhat, but not substantially, but this isn't my reason for doing it. I'm doing it to get some of the fundamental knowledge I feel may be lacking from not specialising in a cyber security degree as well as gaining more hands on knowledge of digital forensics... and maybe to prove something to myself.
    Offline

    6
    ReputationRep:
    Study what you love!


    Posted from TSR Mobile
 
 
 
Poll
Do you like carrot cake?

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reply
Hide
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.